James Maddison

James Maddison attracting interest from Arsenal & Chelsea

Matt O'Connor-Simpson
Maddison is one of Leicester's key players
Maddison is one of Leicester's key players / Visionhaus/Getty Images
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Leicester City midfielder James Maddison is attracting interest from Arsenal and Chelsea.

Maddison has impressed since moving to the Foxes from Norwich in 2018, making over 100 appearances and scoring 27 goals. He has also carved out a reputation as one of Europe's most prolific creators due to his excellent vision and set-piece delivery.

He started the 2020/2021 season particularly strong, registering 11 goals before an injury ruled him out in February. When he returned Maddison struggled to hit those heights again with his downturn in form one of the reasons that Leicester missed out on securing Champions League football, while the player himself was left out of England's Euro 2020 squad.

With the Foxes set for another season in the Europa League, the midfielder has been linked with a move away from the club. As reported by Chris Wheatley, Mikel Arteta is a 'huge fan' of Maddison and he would be interested in making him a Gunner. However, it is nothing more than strong interest at this stage.

What is likely to prove a stumbling block is the fee. Maddison still has three years left to run on his contract and Leicester are known as tough negotiators. They managed to coax more than £80m out of Manchester United for Harry Maguire and received good fees for Riyad Mahrez, Danny Drinkwater and Ben Chilwell as well.

James Maddison
Maddison ended the season poorly / Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Arsenal will need to sell before they finance the move, with Granit Xhaka one of the players on the chopping block. Although the club did reject Roma's first bid for the midfielder, he is widely expected to depart the Emirates Stadium this summer. Hector Bellerin, Alexandre Lacazette and Bernd Leno may also leave.

Arsenal are not the only team interested in Maddison. Chelsea are also admirers and could make a move if Hakim Ziyech - whose relationship with Thomas Tuchel is said to have broken down - leaves Stamford Bridge.

However, that move may also be unlikely, with Maddison a costly prospective replacement for a player who was often on the fringes of Tuchel's plans last season.

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